ClusterSeven, a spreadsheet management software provider, announced a strategic alliance with DoubleHelix, a management consulting firm specialising in derivatives, credit derivatives and treasury departments, to offer spreadsheet management solutions for mission critical spreadsheets in major investment banks, asset management firms and private banks. This partnership, formed in 2006, covers the UK and Europe.
According to a recent ClusterSeven survey, 89% of banks believe spreadsheets are now a compliance issue for the FSA, Basel II, SOX and MiFID. The highest concern was the area of new products where spreadsheets contain banks’ intellectual property and the profit margins are made. 91% of banks heavily depend on spreadsheets for new business analysis and support while 82% frequently use them for new product/instrument creation. As regulations become more pervasive, the need for financial institutions to monitor and control spreadsheets becomes ever more pressing.
“All our clients, most of them major investment banks, are striving to meet audit and compliance regulations,” says Geoff Dixon, CEO, DoubleHelix. “One of their biggest problems is spreadsheet dependency, especially within their most innovative and profitable activities – the creation of new products. ClusterSeven’s software allows businesses to continue using spreadsheets but within a structured environment and promoting best practice,” he continues.
Financial institutions can swiftly approve changes and ensure data integrity of their spreadsheets without locking them down or reducing their effectiveness, thus allowing them to be treated like any other business application and drastically reducing the time spent trying to maintain and control them.
Steve Semenzato, founder and CEO ClusterSeven, says, “Spreadsheets are an intrinsic part of the operational fabric of a business. Through our new partnership with DoubleHelix, we aim to enable derivatives and treasury departments, who rely on spreadsheets for that innovative edge to mitigate operational risk and ensure regulatory compliance.”